Welcome to the UFC: Viviane Araujo

UFC 237 Viviane Araujo
Credit: Iron FC Facebook

Viviane Araujo will be stepping in on very short notice to take on Talita Bernardo at UFC 237, replacing the previously debuting Melissa Gatto.

The UFC is coming to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on May 11 in the Jeunesse Arena. The card is full with Rose Namajunas defending her strawweight title against Jessica Andrade, and also has legends, rising talent, and two debuts. One of those being Viviane Araujo who is stepping in on short notice with under a week to prepare. Araujo will be taking on Talita Bernardo (5-3 MMA, 1-2 UFC) who was originally supposed to take on Jessica Rose-Clark and then Melissa Gatto, but both pulled out due to injury.

Brasilia, Federal District, Brazil
Cerrado MMA
4 Submissions (3 Armbars, Heel Hook)

How Viviane Araujo Fares in the UFC:

Viviane Araujo is a good prospect with her only loss coming to current UFC fighter Sarah Frota. She has wins over decent competition and in her last fight, she won the Pancrase strawweight title. One the feet, the Brazilian throws a good straight jab with good long punches to follow up. Araujo throws a lot of feints, which is why she’s an accurate striker dealing damage to her opponents face. She can be telegraphed at times with uppercuts and head kicks but for the most part, she’s good at picking her shots. Her wrestling is decent but hasn’t really been challenged against more solid opposition. Her level changes, though, are on point as it’s the work on top that is impressive. I’m not fully impressed with her jiu-jitsu but she can take the back and transition well, but can be loose with the position. Araujo is good at taking the mount where she has solid ground-and-pound being a fight-ender. Overall, a good signing but not sure how far she goes fighting good competition but I think she will stand her ground.

  • Striking: B-
  • Kickboxing: C
  • Clinch: B-
  • Wrestling: C+
  • Grappling: C+
  • Striking Defense: C+
  • Takedown Defense: A
  • Cardio: B-
  • Biggest Strength: Striking
  • Biggest Weakness: Grappling IQ

How Gatto Matches Up with Talita Bernardo:

Araujo is a much tougher matchup than Gatto was, but altogether this is a close fight. Araujo is much better on the feet as she’s more technical, faster, and hits a lot harder. The question for this fight is if it hits the mat though. Araujo can hold her own on the mat but Bernardo has better BJJ. Araujo has good aspects in her grappling but does lack positional skills, so Bernardo can capitalize on mistakes. This I would describe as a striker vs. grappler. Araujo has a good chance at winning but on extremely short notice, up two weight classes, that’s a hard task. With that said, Bernardo is no world beater so if Araujo lives up to her past fights, then she should take this fight.


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